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NEW HOPE, Pa. - Shoppers say they trust their pharmacist as a source of information on medications, but fewer than one out of four of them spoke to their pharmacist when they last filled a medication, according to new insights in a consumer survey from WilsonRx Reports here.
Most retail pharmacies are not encouraging pharmacist interaction -- a critical factor in creating loyal customers. "Pharmacists are uniquely positioned to provide patient education and counseling, yet few take advantage of the opportunity," said third generation pharmacist Jim Wilson, president of Wilson Health Information, which released the survey results.
The downside, said Wilson, "is that consumers may be missing the chance to develop a relationship with their pharmacist and learn more about their medications and their proper use. Customers are more satisfied and more loyal to their pharmacy and more likely to take their medications as prescribed, if they speak to their pharmacist."
Now in its seventh year, the WilsonRx Survey, which includes more than 300 topics, was mailed to 68,721 household shoppers across the 48 continental states and the top 23 U.S. metropolitan markets in February of 2006.
According to the survey, the most commonly used pharmacies in the U.S. include Walgreens, CVS, Wal-Mart, Medco, Caremark, Kroger, and Rite Aid. Overall, pharmacy chains continue to be the most commonly used source of prescriptions, followed by mail, independent, food store, mass merchant, and clinic pharmacies.
Nearly half (48 percent) of household consumers reported that they use more than one pharmacy to fill prescriptions. Among those who use mail, 70 percent said they probably or definitely would use their local pharmacy if the amount and price of the product were identical.
The WilsonRx reports provide healthcare executives with competitive intelligence and information about levels of satisfaction and importance ratings for more than 50 pharmacy related issues for the leading chains.